County health departments around Texas are raising their vigilance after a second measles case was confirmed in Collin County on Monday.
No identifying information about the patient was released, but they did say that person spent a “limited amount of time, while contagious” at a Kroger on N. Preston Road in Prosper last Friday from 9 a.m. - 10 a.m.
Dr. Phil Huang, the new director of Dallas County Health and Human Services, said time is critical for the Collin County investigators.
“When a case is identified we have epidemiologists that contact the patient, identify when they were exposed, when they developed symptoms, what period of time they were communicable and identify in what other situations there might have been exposure to other people,” Huang said.
The doctor said those closest to an infected person are the biggest concern.
“For instance if there was a family member who was not up to date on their immunizations and were exposed then they might need to be self-quarantined,” Huang said.
The first case of measles in Collin County was reported last week — an adult who traveled internationally. But health officials say the cases tend to pop in pockets where people are choosing not to be vaccinated.
“We’re worried and it’s concerning and it just reinforces why it is so important for everyone to be immunized. We shouldn’t be having to deal with this in this day and age,” Huang said.
While Dallas County has not recorded a measles case in 2019, the once eradicated, highly contagious disease is very much on the radar.
“One of the things that we do in public health 24/7 is monitoring for these situations,” Huang said.